A physical examination is a routine test your primary care provider (PCP) performs to check your overall health. A PCP may be a doctor, a nurse practitioner, or a physician assistant. You don’t have to be sick to request an exam, it is also known as a wellness exam.
There are different tests that can be performed during your physical examination. Depending on your age or medical or family history, your PCP may recommend additional testing.
A physical examination helps your PCP to determine the general status of your health. The exam also gives you a chance to talk to them about any ongoing pain or symptoms that you’re experiencing or any other health concerns that you might have.
A physical examination is recommended at least once a year. These exams are used to:
- check for possible diseases so they can be treated early
- identify any issues that may become medical concerns in the future
- update necessary immunizations
- ensure that you are maintaining a healthy diet and exercise routine
These exams are a good way to check cholesterol, blood pressure, and blood sugar levels. These levels may be high without you ever showing any signs or symptoms. Regular screening allows your PCP to treat these conditions before they become severe.
Your PCP may also perform a physical exam before a surgery or before beginning your treatment for a medical condition.
Proper preparation for your physical can help you get the most out of your time with your PCP. You should gather the following information prior to your appointment:
- list of current medications, including over-the-counter drugs and any herbal supplements
- list of any symptoms or pain you are experiencing
- results from any recent or relevant tests
- medical and surgical history
- names and contact information for other doctors you may have seen recently
- if you have an implanted device such as a pacemaker or defibrillator, bring a copy of the front and back of your device card
- any additional questions you would like answered
What to expect
During your exam, you will be asked a series of questions regarding your medical history, including any allergies, past surgeries, or symptoms you might have. They may also ask about your lifestyle, including if you exercise, smoke, or drink alcohol. Your PCP will also record your height, weight, and pulse.
Your PCP will usually begin inspecting your body for unusual marks or growths. You may sit or stand during this part of the exam.
Next, they may have you lie down and will feel your abdomen and other parts of your body. When doing this, your PCP is inspecting the consistency, location, size, tenderness, and texture of your individual organs.
A stethoscope will be used to listen to various parts of your body. This could include listening to your lungs while you take deep breaths and listening to your intestines, your heart and your lungs.
Your PCP will also use a technique known as “percussion,” which involves tapping the body like it’s a drum. This technique helps your PCP discover fluid in areas where it shouldn’t be, as well as locate the borders, consistency, and size of organs.
And that’s about the extent of a routine physical examination.
To book your routine physical call the clinic nearest you and be sure to let them know what it is you are interested in knowing about. If getting your testosterone levels checked is a priority make a point of saying so. Also, be sure to have them look into your coverage to ensure that you are covered.
You can trust that having your physical at T Off Your Health there will be little to no wait time and you will feel comfortable in the sports-themed clinic atmosphere. Our goal is to have you in and out as quickly as possible so you can be on with your day.
To make an appointment for a routine physical at any of our 3 locations you can call 817-345-0303. We look forward supporting you in feeling your best.